The twelve signs of the Chinese zodiac, which is based on a lunar calendar, are represented by animals. Each New Year begins on the date of the first New Moon in Aquarius. That New Moon date for this year, 2012, is January 23, and it is the Year of the Dragon.
Much like the four elements of our own Western Astrology (water, earth, air, fire), Chinese Astrology also utilizes elements or traits specific to each sign. There are five elements in Chinese Astrology (metal, water, wood, fire and earth), and 2012 is the Year of the Water Dragon.
The Dragon is the fifth sign in the lunar cycle. Dragons are strong and heroic. They spark imagination in all of us. Dragons are very positive people, and if they find themselves in a rare dark mood, they will not be there for very long. They are resilient and open, unable to hide their feelings. They also cannot pretend to have feelings they don’t have.
If you were born between 7 A.M. and 9 A.M., which is the time of day ruled by the Dragon, you have a Dragon ascendant, and therefore take on some of the Dragon’s personality traits. Some dragons can be fierce and unyielding and some overly optimistic, it all depends on the element. The Water Dragon is all about growth and expansion.
The Five Dragons:
The sign and element combinations occur in 60-year intervals. Metal Dragon (1940, 2000, 2060); Water Dragon (1952, 2012); Wood Dragon (1904, 1964, 2024); Fire Dragon (1916, 1976, 2036); and Earth Dragon (1928, 1988, 2048).
Betty Grable (Fire Dragon), Frank Sinatra (Fire Dragon), John Lennon (Metal Dragon), Joan of Arc (Water Dragon), Shirley Temple (Earth Dragon), Salvador Dali (Wood Dragon)
The Water Dragon
In the element of water the Dragon is soothed of his otherwise imperious temperament. The Water Dragon is, of all the Dragons, the most magnanimous, striving to make changes for the good of all rather than just self. The Water Dragon possesses great will power, and while they try to better the world around them, they are not in such a rush, realizing that lasting changes take time. On the faulty side, the Water Dragon may tend to get swept away with optimism, and so he must be careful to build his dreams for the future upon solid ground, armed with a formidable plan.
The Year of the Dragon: What to Expect
The element for this Year of the Dragon is positive water. There can be negative water years too, but this is not one of them. Think of yin and yang, one is not better than the other, both work to balance our world. A positive water element is yang; it is active and on the move, like waves of change washing over us. Positive water, like a tsunami, can also destroy and devastate, but it wipes the slate clean to rebuild. Sometimes things are so complicated and entangled, that tearing down and building something new is the best choice.
As I look to our current Western Astrology and the changes we are just in the beginnings of, I can reinforce that notion of change by simply looking at Uranus, the planet of revolution. Uranus is currently in Aries, where it will stay until 2018. Uranus is associated with revolution in a collective sense. It is less about individual change, although it affects us all individually by its largess. We have already seen these waves of changes in governments in the Middle East and we will see more changes in many areas of life over the next few years. Collective change powered by a rushing wave or two makes for an interesting year.
The Year of the Water Dragon may at times seem like a roller coaster ride, with unexpected twists and turns on a more dramatic level than we’ve been used to (if that’s possible), but it’s a good ride and an experience not to be missed. It is a history making time, and we have front row seats. That’s exciting.